Friday, December 18, 2009

[MLE] UNICEF statement on Indigenous Languages

Dear MLE friends,

Minority Rights Group International has released "
Indigenous Languages: A View from UNICEF" . This seven-page document provides a succinct summary of UNICEF's view of indigenous languages, but was not included in the main report State of the World's Minorities and Indigenous Peoples 2009.

The summary statement on the end states:

In conclusion, it is necessary to work for the maintenance and development of  indigenous languages and for their use throughout society. But it is also necessary  to work with the rest of the population, to promote a culture which respects cultural diversity and enrichment between cultures, in order to establish a framework for inclusive democracy

[MLE] UNICEF statement on Indigenous Languages

Dear MLE friends,

Minority Rights Group International has released "
Indigenous Languages: A View from UNICEF" . This seven-page document provides a succinct summary of UNICEF's view of indigenous languages, but was not included in the main report State of the World's Minorities and Indigenous Peoples 2009.

The summary statement on the end states:

In conclusion, it is necessary to work for the maintenance and development of  indigenous languages and for their use throughout society. But it is also necessary  to work with the rest of the population, to promote a culture which respects cultural diversity and enrichment between cultures, in order to establish a framework for inclusive democracy. 

Friday, December 11, 2009

[MLE] MLE Certificate Program; Payap University 11 Oct - 6 Nov 2010

Dear MLE Friends,
Last year a couple of people from South Asia participated in the MLE MA level course Payap University in ChiangMai offers in Thailand. In 2010 it will be offered again from Oct 11 till Nov 6th. The details are attached.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

[MLE] MLE Resource Centre Website launched

Dear MLE friends,
Yesterday I visited the new MLE resource centre hosted by Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), sponsored by Unicef. They now have their own office on the campus and also have a nice website: http://www.nmrc-jnu.org/
The website already contains several good MLE related articles, has book references, pictures and other things. There is also a way to register yourself to subscribe to a newsletter: Worth doing!

Friday, October 9, 2009

[MLE] Conference On Multilingual Education - Kenya, July 2010

Dear MLE friends,
Kenya is not next door, but given the very interesting list of topics, I thought I should still share this conference announcement with you.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

[MLE] Article on government MLE programme in Philippines

Dear MLE friends,
Below is a short article by Dr Michael Tan of the University of the Philippines about the Philippino government's Mother Tongue Based Multilingual Education (MTBMLE) programme. It was published in a newspaper called the Inquirer. As mentioned before the Philippines government has decided to implement MultiLingual Education (MLE) in their primary schools. It will be interesting for us in India to follow that as it is an Asian country with many minority languages.
A quote:

“To implement the new policy, DepEd will support very basic work like developing orthographies (spelling system) for local languages to use for educational materials. Community involvement will be vital for this new program to succeed. Expect to see, in the years ahead, a renewed pride in local languages because of this new policy, even as the Filipino becomes more adept at acquiring proficiency in a second, a third, even a fourth language.”

Monday, August 24, 2009

[MLE] What do the tribal people themselves think?

Dear MLE friends,
Most of the articles, research papers and newspaper clippings in this list are building a case to support MLE. However, there are also other voices. Some claiming that the tribal people themselves do not want it. Attached is an article making that claim.

This brings out an important question: it seems that at this point the academic and NGO world is quite convinced that a multilingual approach will be best for the children on the long run, but have we been able to interact sufficient with the tribal communities themselves on this? Have we been able to find leaders who really represent the voice of the people themselves?

Friday, August 21, 2009

[MLE] SEAMEO: "Mother tongue as bridge language of instruction: policies and experiences in Southeast Asia"

"
Dear MLE friends,
SEAMEO is the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization. It recently  published a collection of language policies and case studies on mother tongue as bridge language of instruction from the eleven countries in Southeast Asia.  The publication, entitled "Mother tongue as bridge language of instruction: policies and experiences in Southeast Asia" was produced and published in collaboration with the SEAMEO Member Countries. It is stated that the publication is regarded as the most valuable output from the SEAMEO-World Bank Project on Mother Tongue and can be a rich advocacy tool.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

[MLE] Rights to Education Bill advocates Mother Tongue

Dear MLE friends,
Last month the much discussed Right to Education Bill, passed in both Houses of the Parliament. In it many important issues are addressed. In the context of this mailing list the following line is important:
(f) medium of instructions shall, as far as practicable, be in child's mother tongue;
Of course more significant is the context in which that line is written (see below). One aim of the bill is to make the education in India more child centred. Using the mother tongue is part of that reform.

Monday, August 17, 2009

FW: [MLE] UN statement on indigenous people's right to education

Dear MLE friends,
The Human Rights Council of the United Nations just published a report titled: "Study on lessons learned and challenges to achieve the implementation of the right of indigenous peoples to education".

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

[MLE] The JNU MLE conference book is out!

Dear MLE friends,
Congratulation to Prof Ajit Mohanty and his team: the book with a selection of the JNU MLE conference papers of early 2008 came out. The title is "Multilingual Education For Social Justice" Today in the The Hindu appeared a review. The concluding paragraph reads:

"The book resonates with the contemporary Indian scene, where language, particularly as a medium of learning, has become a fiercely contested terrain. The scales are disastrously tilting to suit the elite design of language as tool for domination. The Dalit, indigenous, migrant, poor child, if helped to learn in the medium of its language, will blossom into a strong, confident, creative person, equally participating in building the India of our dreams."

Friday, July 31, 2009

[MLE] Malaysia drops English and returns to mother tongue

Dear MLE friends,
Several states in India have decided to make English the medium of instruction at the schools. In the below articles you can read that Malaysia regretted that they made that choice 6 years ago because of a “2008 survey which found that students' performance in maths and science had fallen since it had been taught in English, and that rural children were hit particularly hard”.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

[MLE] New report: State of worlds minorities 2009

Dear MLE friends,
Lobbying on international level takes a lot of effort and time. It is good to note that in the recently released 'State of the World's Minorities 2009' MLE is getting prominent attention. The report is prepared by the Minority Rights Group International (MRG) in collaboration with UNICEF. The report has an entire chapter on MLE (attached).

[MLE] New report: State of worlds minorities 2009


Dear MLE friends,
Lobbying on international level takes a lot of effort and time. It is good to note that in the recently released 'State of the World's Minorities 2009' MLE is getting prominent attention. The report is prepared by the Minority Rights Group International (MRG) in collaboration with UNICEF. The report has an entire chapter on MLE (attached). Some more details (From Helen Pinnock of Save The Children UK) are below.
·       Links to the report: http://www.minorityrights.org/7948/state-of-the-worlds-minorities/state-of-the-worlds-minorities-and-indigenous-peoples-2009.html#links_and_downloads (For full report, click on "Full text" on the right hand column under "downloads".
·       A press release focusing on Language: http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=47693
·       Article: Indigenous Languages: A View from UNICEF : http://www.minorityrights.org/download.php?id=664

Fwd: [MLE] New report: State of worlds minorities 2009


Dear MLE friends,
Lobbying on international level takes a lot of effort and time. It is good to note that in the recently released 'State of the World's Minorities 2009' MLE is getting prominent attention. The report is prepared by the Minority Rights Group International (MRG) in collaboration with UNICEF. The report has an entire chapter on MLE (attached). Some more details (From Helen Pinnock of Save The Children UK) are below.
·       Links to the report: http://www.minorityrights.org/7948/state-of-the-worlds-minorities/state-of-the-worlds-minorities-and-indigenous-peoples-2009.html#links_and_downloads (For full report, click on "Full text" on the right hand column under "downloads".
·       A press release focusing on Language: http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=47693
·       Article: Indigenous Languages: A View from UNICEF : http://www.minorityrights.org/download.php?id=664

Monday, July 27, 2009

[MLE] Philippines official order and research findings

Dear MLE friends,
In the past most documentation was from Papua New Guinea. Indian officials often responded that the situation it that country is too different from India to learn from it. However the Philippines is now highly involved and has more similarities to India. Attached are:
  • An official order from Education Secretary with as subject: “Institutionalising mother tongue based MultiLingual Education“
  • An overview of the research findings of an MLE programme: “Third Year Results of the First  Language MLE Program in the Philippines.”

Thursday, July 2, 2009

[MLE] NCERT Seminar on School Curriculum, Policies and Practices

Dear MLE friends,
Curriculum and language are very much related. In the announcement of the below mentioned seminar “multilingualism” is specifically mentioned.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

[MLE] SC Publication: Steps Towards Learning: A guide to overcoming language barriers in children's education

Dear MLE friends,
Safe the Children has become a strong advocate for MultiLingual Education (MLE). SC UK just produced a good publication called “Steps Towards Learning: A guide to overcoming language barriers in children's education” The intro says:

This guide summarises and explains what is known worldwide about the difficulties that children experience with unfamiliar school language. It offers evidence, arguments and practical steps to help stop language preventing children from learning. The guide focuses on developing countries, as this is where the majority of children who do not speak the language of school live. It offers strategies to help improve children’s chances of doing better in school, even when it appears very difficult to change the way language is currently used in education.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

[MLE] Issue of Indian Folklife on MLE

Dear MLE friends,
The latest issue of Indian Folklife is focused on MLE. The guest editor, Dr Mahendra Mishra, writes in his editorial:

This newsletter contains articles contributed by practitioners and policy makers on indigenous education and multilingual education across the globe. Tove Skutnabb Kangas is a well known advocate of Multilingual Education and Linguistic Human Rights. David A. Hough is a Liberatory Pedagogist and his focus is on Nepal Multilingual Education Project to promote tribal education through bottom up approach, empowering the indigenous community. Iina Nurmela’s paper is based on the experiential part of David’s work in Nepal. Susanne Perez’s article explores the indigenous education system of Peru. Dhir Jhingran has suggested appropriate educational strategies for implementation arrangements referring some feasible models drawing from the successful models from different countries where indigenous education has been made successful.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

[MLE] Newspaper articvle "Local dialect can bridge the gap'

Dear MLE friends,
Ever now and then the press picks up on the value of the use of the mother tongue. Express published an article based on observations in Orissa. A copy of the article you find below this entry. This is the link:


Regards,
Karsten (Thanks to Dr Mahendra Mishra for passing on the article)

Karsten van Riezen
Education Consultant, SIL Int.
SIL, South Asia Group.

Disclaimer: This mailing list is an informal way to share MLE related information. The sender neither claims credit or responsibility for the reports and events shared through this mailing list. Subscribing or unsubscribe by writing "[MLE] Subscribe" or "[MLE] Unsubscribe" in the subject-line and send a message to: karsten_van_riezen@sil.org. Any contributions or suggestions are welcome.


‘Local dialect can bridge the gap’

First Published : 31 Mar 2009 03:58:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 31 Mar 2009 02:41:58 PM IST
DHENKANAL: The State Government has time and again being making tall claims to bring tribal children into the mainstream through proper implementation of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA). The ground reality here, however, is far from different. Dreams of bridging the gap and reducing social and economic inequality in tribal-dominated Kankadahada and SC/ST-dominated Hindol blocks and certain pockets in Parjang and Gondia blocks, have yet not been realised for a bevy of reasons.
In Dhenkanal district, the academic needs of tribal children are not properly addressed. The increasing communication gap between teachers and tribal children is said to be one of the major reasons for students’ lack of interest in studies.
Official sources said 228 schools function in Kankadahada block in Kamakshyanagar sub-division. Of them, while 169 schools are operating under the Department of Schools and Mass Education of the Government, nine schools come under the Department of Welfare. The combined strength of all these schools is 26,456 students.
In addition to this, about 7,000 students stay and study in 38 residential schools, ashrams and seva ashrams in eight blocks under the Welfare Department, most of these students are from tribal communities.
Despite surveys about various aspects of facilitating SSA having been conducted, the concerns and needs of tribal children are yet to be addressed. Many tribals feel that as the children are more acquainted and comfortable with the Santhali dialect education in that medium would be desirable.
‘‘Santhali is our mother tongue and we feel that education through our local dialect would bridge the communication gap. We do not oppose the present system of education, but teaching our wards in the language and dialect they are comfortable with would be more helpful,’’ said Dusa Murmu, a local.
Sources said after Class V, very few children pursue higher education. Besides this, teachers in these schools do know tribal languages like Munda, Santhali, Matia, Mankedia, Juang and Gadabparda. At present, NCLP funded schools are also facing the same problem in Hindol and other tribal-concentrated villages.
Kamakshyanagar district Inspector of Schools, Mayadhar Pany admitted to the plight of the tribal children in SSA schools. Other residential schools, in some cases, had experienced the same difficulties, he said.
Hindol district Inspector of Schools, Saroj Kumar Dora informed that there is no bilingual teacher posted in any school in Hindol education district. He also admitted that communication gap is a major hindrance in motivating children towards education. Even capable teachers find it difficult to concentrate on the task at hand in tribal-dominated communities. Besides, in many schools, teaching and learning materials are not used to motivate students. Parents are not invited to schools to discuss the progress of their children in academics.
Educationist Ghanashyam Dash of Kamakshyanagar, who knows four tribal languages and used to impart training to teachers, said the government must include Dhenkanal district in multilingual category like KBK and five other districts in the state.
"It should also think of opening a tribal training centre here to educate teachers for successful implementation of primary education in tribal-dominated blocks," Dash said.
Susandhya Mohanty, a research scholar of training and education, suggested follow-up action and said concerns of tribals should be given top priority on a long-term basis.
Meanwhile, to tackle the communication gap, tribal leaders demanded posting of bilingual teachers or teachers adequately educated about tribal languages. Without these provisions, they said, the existing SSA structure would not help children in building their future.

Friday, April 24, 2009

[MLE] E-Publication: Mother tonque Matters

Dear MLE friends,
UNESCO put an other good and helpful MLE related publication on the Web: "Mother tongue matters: local language as a key to effective learning" is now available on-line. This book contains case studies from Papua New Guinea, Mali and Peru. It also contains a section on the Thomas and Collier longitudinal study. If you rather look for recommendations read the "Key Findings" chapter. I copy the conclusion chapter below.


The book is written by Dörthe Bühmann and Barbara Trudell.

Regards,
Karsten

Karsten van Riezen
Education Consultant, SIL Int.
SIL, South Asia Group.

Disclaimer: This mailing list is an informal way to share MLE related information. The sender neither claims credit or responsibility for the reports and events shared through this mailing list. Subscribing or unsubscribe by writing "[MLE] Subscribe" or "[MLE] Unsubscribe" in the subject-line and send a message to: karsten_van_riezen@sil.org. Any contributions or suggestions are welcome.

Conclusion

The evidence is clear: mother-tongue-based bilingual education significantly
enhances the learning outcomes of students from minority language
communities. Moreover, when mother-tongue bilingual education
programmes are developed in a manner that involves community members
in some significant way and explicitly addresses community concerns, these
programmes also promote the identification of the minority community
with the formal education process.
h   e parameters that shape a bilingual education programme include the
availability of resources, its pedagogical and social goals, and the political
environment in which it is to be implemented. h   e examples described
above demonstrate a variety of such parameters, all of which have given
rise to innovative and effective bilingual education models.
It is also clear that successful models of bilingual education require
the collaboration of more than one or two actors. Development of the
language itself, of curricular materials, teacher training, advocacy with
the community and financial support all imply a range of participants
in the process. For this reason, any government planning to establish a
mother-tongue bilingual education programme would do well to aim for
the involvement of multiple partners in ensuring its success.
As complex an undertaking as such a programme can be, these four case
studies show that, with commitment and careful planning, it is possible for
any nation to provide higher quality learning outcomes for its minority-
language students through mother-tongue bilingual education.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

[MLE] "Enabling Education" issue on language

Dear MLE friends,
Enabling Education is a publication of Enabling Education Network. Their 12th issue has over 15 pages with articles on language education issues. It states in the introductions:

“In this special section, we will look at language and the impact it has on children’s
participation and achievement in education. The use of, and teaching of, language is
a complex issue. We can only provide a brief introduction through the articles in this
newsletter, but ideas for further reading are provided on page 24.”

Thursday, March 12, 2009

[MLE] MHRD meeting

Dear MLE friends,
Last month Dr. Arun Kumar Rath, Secretary, DSE & L, MHRD called for a meeting on MultiLingual Education. All key players were present. The most significant outcome was “the constitution of a National Resource Group (NRG) on MLE in the light of the NRG of SSA on quality. This NRG should meet at least once every three to six months to discuss various emerging issues and strategize for better implementation of MLE. The NRG should design non–negotiables for MLE interventions, monitor interventions and provide technical support to the concerned states.”

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

[MLE] Minorities forum on Education

Dear MLE friends,
At the Minority Forum of the Human Rights Council of the United Nations, about 70 recommendations were given on Education. Severel of those have references to the language. E.g.

59. School language regimes for the initial stages of education in State schools should ideally
employ the language of the child as the predominant medium of instruction, with a gradual
introduction of the State language or dominant local language, if different from that of the child,
at a later stage, where possible by bilingual teachers sensitive to the cultural backgrounds of
minority children.

65. The promotion of the cultural rights of minorities is necessary to further the fulfilment of
their educational rights. These rights include access to written, audio and visual media materials
in their own language in order to enrich the cultural lives of minorities. There must also be the
free exchange of books and other educational materials and access to universities run by
members of their national group in other States.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

[MLE] Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger

Dear MLE friends,
A new recourse on endangered languages is available. Check it out:

UNESCO launches the electronic version of the new edition of its Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger on 19 February
The Atlas, presented on the eve of International Mother Language Day (21 February), enables searches according to several criteria, and ranks the 2,500 endangered languages that are listed according to five different levels of vitality: unsafe, definitely endangered, severely endangered, critically endangered and extinct., youth and the private sector. The work carried out by the more than 30 linguists who worked together on the Atlas shows that the phenomenon of disappearing languages appears in every region and in very variable economic conditions.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

[MLE] International Mother Language Day

Dear MLE friends,
Today is the International Mother Language Day! See the UNESCO announcement below.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

[MLE] MLE videos on YouTube; India Video added

Dear MLE friends,
The India MLE video has now been added to the YouTube list. It is a good link to pass on when you do advocacy with policy makers.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

[MLE] India's primary school education info goes online

Dear MLE friends,
Most MLE efforts take place in primary schools. The government of India has now put the “school reports charts” of most(?)  primary schools in India on line. Check out the schools in your project.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

[MLE] MLE course announcement; Chiang Mai, 18 May - 12 June

Dear MLE friends,
In depth training on MLE is not yet available in India. Hence I forward this opportunity in Thailand. It is a 4 weeks course which is part of an MA programme at Payap University in Chiang Mai. It will be taught by Dr Dennis & Dr Susan Malone who have extensive experience in MLE, including running workshops in India.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

[MLE] Release of ASER report

Dear MLE Friends,
Even though the ASER report is not directly MLE related, since it is such basic information for anybody with an interest in Education, I am sure most of you will be interested to get a copy. You can download it from: http://www.pratham.org/aserrep.php

Saturday, January 10, 2009

[MLE] Language Conf in B'desh in June 09

Dear MLE friends,
It is not to often that languages conferences are hold within our region. This year there will be one in B’desh. The website says:

8th International Language and Development Conference
Dhaka, Bangladesh from 23 to 25 June 2009. The conference has a strong focus on providing a forum for examining important issues related to language policy, language learning and language teaching in the context of the developing world and, in particular, from the perspective of policy makers, language and literacy educators, development professionals and donors.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

[MLE] MLE videos on YouTube



Dear MLE friends,
Some people rather watch a video than reading a document on MLE. The videos that were produced a while ago by UNESCO Bangkok (In collaboration with SIL) are now on YouTube: Using modern technology for advocacy!

Monday, January 5, 2009

[MLE] Jharkhand | Now, read Shakespeare in Santhali


Dear MLE friends,



Now, read Shakespeare in Santhali
- Orissa writer translates Midsummer Night’s Dream, comes up with T-shirts & handbags to popularise Ol Chiki script”